'The academy': becoming an adult while playing soccer

Themes such as personal improvement, competitiveness, the parent-child relationship, discipline, abuse of power, homophobia and machismo in sports are present in The Academy, the new series produced by Sony Pictures and Brutal Media set in a school.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
31 March 2024 Sunday 10:26
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'The academy': becoming an adult while playing soccer

Themes such as personal improvement, competitiveness, the parent-child relationship, discipline, abuse of power, homophobia and machismo in sports are present in The Academy, the new series produced by Sony Pictures and Brutal Media set in a school. football where a group of boys and girls train in one of the best clubs in the world to become great world stars. TV3 premieres the first two episodes of the eight episodes today, Monday at 10 p.m., and will then be available on the 3Cat platform. For its part, Prime Video will include it in its entirety tomorrow, Tuesday, in its catalog.

The protagonist team of the fiction is Apolo FC, “a fictional club within a real environment” and that is why the teams and players they will face are real like Espanyol, L'Hospitalet, Terrassa, Europa and Badalona, Fernando Trullols, director of the series, advances. "The easy analogy is with Barça's Masia or Real Madrid's Factory because Apolo is also an elite and centenary team that has won European Cups," he points out.

Set in an unspecified Catalan environment, the series wants to reach a very broad audience who does not necessarily have to like football, in the same way that Harry Potter fans do not necessarily have to like magic either. Universal themes are discussed, with psychology and sport as the backbone. “The problems that these young people face are the same as those of others, but much more amplified, because we are talking about a very short career,” says Trullols, director of the short film that won a Goya in 2012, The Pirate Ship.

Furthermore, only 5% of these young people will be able to make the dream come true and then, with all the others, what happens? “We talk about mental health, anxiety and competitiveness in the sense that everyone is companions, but also rivals,” adds Trullols, who defines these young people as “premature adults,” forced by circumstances to fight very soon “for power.” to be who they truly are and to connect with their inner self.”

The series follows both the men's and women's youth teams. In the first, the common thread will be the rivalry between a boy who has recently arrived from Colombia, Jairo (Ton Vieira), and the son of a great legend of the club who has to carry the weight of the surname, Adrián (Marc Soler). In the women's team, the fight of captain Lara (Rita González) will be followed, with an excessive self-demand that contrasts with the little support she receives from her parents compared to her brother, goalkeeper of the men's youth team. .

The filmmaker, who knows the world of sports inside out (he is the nephew of Carles Trullols, roller hockey player and coach, considered the best goalkeeper of his time), affirms that a great research task has been done to explain a sports club from inside. “Sport is a game that has to be accompanied by a smile” is one of his favorite mottos and, in this sense, he regrets the reality that some boys and girls who are in academies of this type can come to hate sport.

“The great values ​​that sport has are personal improvement, camaraderie, the challenge of fighting together... The academy puts all that into value.” For this reason and because of the realism that the series gives off, he would like fathers, mothers and children to watch it together. "It would be lovely."